Wiltshire’s galleries abound with fine works by local artists
PUBLISHED: 11:06 05 March 2008 | UPDATED: 15:03 20 February 2013
Wiltshire's galleries abound with fine works by local artists. Here's just a selection from what can be found in the county this spring.
Rabley Contemporary Drawing Centre , Marlborough
Until 26 April
New Works - James Rielly
Showing until 26 April at Rabley is an exhibition of new works on paper by James Rielly whose softly coloured drawings on thick hand made paper show quietly intense memories of childhood. Rielly, who was part of the Sensation exhibition at the Royal Academy in 1997 alongside Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst, originally trained at Cheltenham College of Arts and is now professor of painting at the Beaux Arts in Paris. His latest watercolours are on show for the first time at Rabley Barn which is, according to Meryl Ainslie is in "the middle of nowhere but the centre of everything," which is how she describes the Rabley Centre of Contemporary Drawing that she runs from her 700 acre farm in the heart of the Marlborough Downs. (01672 511999
Roche Court, East Winterslow
10 May - 7 September
New Generation Revisited
The summer's exhibition at Roche Court will introduce a generation of sculptors from the 1960s and 70s to a new audience and at the same time give others the opportunity to see their work once again. 'New Generation Revisited' will be a tribute to curator Bryan Robertson who ran the Whitechapel Gallery from 1952 - 1968 and was a frequent visitor to East Winterslow. In 1965 it was his New Generation show that introduced a group of ground breaking sculptors who were exploring the relationship between colour and form. 'New Generation Revisited' will reflect that exhibition. On show will be the sculpture and paintings by David Annesley, Michael Bolus, Philip King, Tim Scott, William Tucker and Isaac Witkin, as well as work by Jules Olitski, Antony Donaldson and Francis Morland. Works will be showing in the Gallery, The Artist's House and the Sculpture Park from 11am - 4pm all season
Various locations - West Wiltshire
3 May - 11 May
Cloth Road Arts Week
This nine day week opens a window upon art from West Wiltshire. Taking the form of an art trail, this nine day week will open a window on the diversity of work out there with paintings, sculpture, jewellery, textiles, woodcarving, glassmaking and photography on show. The Arts week will showcase some 72 artists and makers at 32 different venues, many in their own studios.The Cloth Road refers to the once thriving weaving trade that extended through Trowbridge, Bradford-on-Avon, Melksham and the surrounding villages. Work will be on show in town centre galleries and studios and workshops in the heart of the countryside. Practical workshops will be led by artists during the week, and refreshments will be on offer at some of the venues. The trail can be followed on the map provided in a free brochure which will be available from libraries, tourist information centres shops and art centres. Most venues will be open from 11am to 6pm each day.
'Odyssey' - Robert Koenig
At the beginning of the year, Salisbury Cathedral played host to an exhibition by Sculptor Robert Koenig entitled 'Odyssey' featuring figures carved on site whilst at various locations in the tour. Robert began carving figures from lime trees on his mother's family farm in South East Poland back in 1996. Twelve years on, and in late February this year, Koenig set himself up in the cloisters of Salisbury Cathedral where he hand carved figure number 33 joining the other 32 figures from his 'Odyssey' exhibition. Hundreds of visitors came to see the sculptor at work during his residency.
Two-and-a-half metres tall like the other figures in the group, the Salisbury figure was carved from a fallen sycamore tree from the Wilton estate kindly donated by Lord Pembroke, but unlike the others, the Salisbury figure emerged with not only a smile on her face but a name too instigated by a deeply moving requests from people who had watched the work evolve.
The sculptor said it had been cold and hard work carving the figure, but a very satisfying experience: "The mallet I have used to carve over 75 trees and to create all the other figures in Odyssey broke in the first hour of work on the sycamore," said Koenig. "So I had to create this new figure with a new mallet owned for 15 years but never used. It was almost as if it was waiting for its special moment".
After travelling in Poland and before reaching Salisbury, Odyssey was exhibited in Chichester Cathedral, Portsmouth Cathedral, Milton Keynes Church of Christ the Cornerstone, Rochester Cathedral and Stockport Art Gallery. In each of those places an additional figure was carved and the name of its place of origin written under its feet. The Salisbury figure is now itself on the move with its first stop being York Minster later in the year. This will be followed by St Helier, Jersey and then eventually across to Europe.